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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Friday, June 20, 2008

Northampton County's Capital Needs

Northampton County Executive John Stoffa has given council a progress report on the capital needs of the county, as well as other drains on cash. I thought I'd share it with you.

BOND ISSUE/ CAPITAL PROJECTS/ BUILDING NEEDS OF NORTHAMPTON COUNTY AS PROPOSED ON 5/14/2008:

I. THIRTY MILLION DOLLAR BOND ISSUE

None of this can happen without the bond issue or funding from another source. ... The bond issue needs to be decided soon!

Parking Deck - Reviewing immediate repairs that need to be made - trying to keep costs down. [$16 million for new deck].

Parking Deck Demolition - No report. [$4 million demo cost].

Archives - Decision made to be a stand alone building. Sent out RFQ's. Three firms selected. Met with them to discuss the design of the new archives' building. These three firms were given RFP's with a response date of June 12, 2008. Selection of an architect to be made within a week after June 12, 2008. [$3 million cost].

Juvenile Justice Center Expansion - Decision has been made to recommend USA Architect for the design of the center as the result of the RFP process. [$5 million cost].

Old Courthouse Replacement Windows - Engineering fact finding is under way to
determine the scope of the work. Reviewing alternative energy saving programs that might assist with the funding. [$2 million for 120 old windows].

II. ADDITIONAL PROJECTS - FUNDED

Gracedale Windows - Contract is signed. The first preconstruction meeting was held, The contractor has begun set-up operations.

Prison Roof - No report.

Courthouse Concrete Work - I am attempting to secure a signed letter from Mayor Callahan indicating the exact amount of the unused Commerce Center Boulevard grant. We are at the beginning stages of gathering necessary information for the concrete work.

III. TREATMENT CENTER - WORK RELEASE

Proper documentation to be submitted to Bethlehem Township in June for target healing dates in July with the Bethlehem Township Planning Commission and Zoning Hearing Boards.

IV. ADDITIONAL PROJECTS - UNFUNDED OR FUNDED BY FUND BALANCE *

Pavement of the Union Street Gravel Lot - Working on lighting as rapidly as possible in view of recent break-ins to cars parked there. The goal is to have lighting by end of June 2008.

Gracedale Repaving of Parking Lots - The engineering study is under way.

Weaversville Park - On schedule.

Open Space Line of Credit

*Hay Study - In progress, nearing the end.

*Correction Officers Arbitration - Resolved.

*Deputy Sheriff Arbitration - The decision expected within a month
.

7 comments:

A.J.C. said...

What was the "Hay Study?"

Bernie O'Hare said...

The Hay Study refers to an outside consultant hired by the county to study the salaries being paid to county employees and whether they are equitable. This is required by the Admin Code. After the findings are in, it is generally expected that the county will be paying higher salaries.

Anonymous said...

This is a sham. A big payday to special interests. A 4 million dollar stand alone building for archives. Tjhis guy is either the most corrupt guy or the biggest incompetent goof to hold office.
The pretend parking deck problem takes the cake.
Lets spend 180.000 dollars on each spot before we know if we need it.
Must be something Angle wants.

Anonymous said...

The entire parking deck proposal is really more than any reasonable person can be expected to take. Any pol from either side who supports this is demonstrating an appalling lack of responsibility. The county has far more pressing needs.

How about an off-site shuttle lot? Many companies with urban campuses and limited parking use these systems efficiently and effectively. Their administrators' jobs depend upon being proper stewards of their stakeholders' money.

This administration and council apparently feel no such responsibility. And given recent voting patterns, why should they? The past two weeks have been a clinic in bad government. I want Wayne Grube to tell me everything's, "nice."

Anonymous said...

I want to know more about this Hay study. How can it be almost done when hardly anyone has even heard of any investigation or progress about it?? I would like to know how on earth a company could possibly base any decision about job descriptions if they don't physically go to that office and see what's going on???? Many employees are super ticked about being conveniently left in the dark about the progress (or lack of) of the study..............

Bernie O'Hare said...

I imagine that is why the Hay group asked for thse lengthy questionnaires to be completed.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, and considering how short staffed our office (was at the time these questionnaires were to be filled out) because of being overworked (severely) and underpaid, I suppose this means we get shammed again??? I'm sorry, it's a joke to pay large sums of money to an outside firm to "study" county salaries based solely on a "few" piddly questions the employees are required to fill out "for them"--hell, why don't we just get paid that money since we put that work into it to begin with?? I'm sorry, but there is no way shape or form this study would be able to fully understand the difference between what the clerks do in different offices to properly compare what paycheck would accurately compare to the level of work they do unless these people actually enter our offices, question, and observe. So, yes, county employees (depending on who you are, or at least who you bump shoulders with over lunch) are again going to be shafted out of a "proper" pay raise.............